I'm fairly certain that my daughters may grow up to be card sharks. I couldn't be prouder.
When I was growing up, before the advent of On Demand television viewing and portable DVD players, every trip to my grandparents' homes included card games. Crazy Eights, Go Fish, Kings in the Corner, and even Blitz, Rummy 500, and Hand and Foot were popular favorites among my sisters, cousins, aunts, and grandparents. There was always a deck of cards around, a game to be played, and someone to play it with.
Now I've got children of my own. I'm thankful that I'm still able to take them to my grandparents' houses. My daughters have grandparents, great-grandparents, second cousins, first cousins, cousins once removed, and their own siblings around to play with them.
It was only this past summer when, for the first time, my daughters were schooled in card games. It's not that I wasn't interested in playing cards anymore. It's just that with the busy lives we have (after school activities, school, work), I hadn't even thought about it.
My cousin and my grandmother sat around the table on the back porch, preparing to deal a hand. My daughters' curiosity was peaked. The former card player in me was thrilled as I ushered them over to the table. We settled on Go Fish, which the girls had never played before. They played a hand. Then a second. And a third. They played again and again. They wanted to play Go Fish for the rest of our trip, even choosing it over television and the pool.
I will never forget my daughters sitting around that table and playing cards with their extended family, just like I did when I was a kid. I heard cries of, "Nanee's cheating!" and "Fished what I wanted!" and I was instantly a little girl again, playing cards on the porch with Nanee or on the living room floor with Granddaddy.
The memory didn't stop there. When the kids went to bed, my cousins and I got together, pulled the cards out, and convinced my grandparents to join us to play a game. The crowd got rowdy and laughter, conversation, and reminiscing filled the small house. Someone texted a friend to check a rule. Someone "accidentally" forgot to subtract points from their hand. Someone was super happy because they finally won a round.
I can't wait for my girls to grow up and recreate these memories, these fleeting moments, with their extended family, too. We've already set the stage for card games as a favored past time.
I just hope no one sees the Ace I keep up my sleeve.
Kelly is a Yahoo! Shine Parenting Guru. She writes and knits obsessively (often doing both in the bathroom so her three children can't find her). You can read more from Kelly on her blog or Y! Voices.